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Lochte, Phelps Advance to Final of Loaded 400 IM

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Michael Phelps competes in preliminary heat 10 of the Men's 400 m Individual Medley during the 2012 U.S. Olympic Swimming Team Trials at CenturyLink Center on June 25, 2012 in Omaha, Nebraska.  (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)

Michael Phelps competes in preliminary heat 10 of the Men’s 400 m Individual Medley during the 2012 U.S. Olympic Swimming Team Trials at CenturyLink Center on June 25, 2012 in Omaha, Nebraska. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)

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OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — Ryan Lochte and Michael Phelps have advanced to the final of the 400-meter individual medley at the U.S. Olympic swimming trials.

Lochte, the defending world champion, was the top qualifier Monday morning in 4 minutes, 10.66 seconds. Phelps was next fastest, cruising through his preliminary heat in 4:14.72.

It should be quite an evening final. Tyler Clary, who won silver in the event at last year’s worlds, will also be contending for one of the two spots on the Olympic team. He was fourth-fastest at 4:15.88.

Phelps won the 400 IM at the last two Olympics but vowed to drop the grueling event after Beijing. He brought it back over the past year and says he’s known “for a while” that he would be in the race at the trials.

(© Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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